Hey, God … How about a few answers?

Heresy … or is it blasphemy? I always get the two confused. Maybe this is both.

Whatever it is, I really would like a few answers. I know I’m not a model human. Not in any sense of the term, but certainly not in the religious sense. Christian, Jewish, Hindu, or Buddhist … the four religions about which I actually know something … I don’t quite fit into any of them. Mind you, I’m not so bad, either. There are plenty a whole lot worse than me.

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While me and mine struggle along, barely keeping our heads above the water, evil-doers of a very high magnitude are thriving their asses off out in the Big Bad World. In fact, there are a whole lot of really awful people doing well, living, as far as I can tell, happy, healthy, and productive lives.

Old South Church from Boston Commons

Is it possible that somewhere beneath the shiny exterior they are deep in existential torment? Maybe, but I’m betting not. In my admittedly limited experience, rotten people are not introspective. They do what they do and they don’t spend a lot of time feeling bad about it. In fact, they don’t spend any time at all feeling bad about it. Maybe if something happens to upset the smooth flow of their expensive lives, they pause and ponder … but I’m not convinced. They probably do something even worse and move on.

So how come they have a “get out of jail free” card and people like me, whose sins are of the ordinary, run-of-the-mill kind, wind up with the world falling down around our ears, wondering how we’ll ever dig our way out from under the rock pile that covers us?  To say that it doesn’t seem fair does not begin to address the issue.

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Like millions of humans throughout the ages and stages of human development, why evil thrives and so often, good people live desperate, miserable lives simply doesn’t make sense. I’ve given every effort to cultivating Christian acceptance, Jewish Nihilism, Existential cynicism, Asian acceptance of unknown Karma … and it still doesn’t work for me.

If there is a God and He, She, It, or They is or are just and good and this Deity loves us, cares for us, wants us to be happy … it doesn’t make sense. Telling me it is not mine to understand because I am a mere human and only God can know God’s reasons seems a thin excuse. I couldn’t pawn that one off on my son when he was 7, and it doesn’t fly well now either.

So I have to ask another question that won’t get an answer: Do we … do I myself … seriously believe God involves Himself in our day-to-day activities? Regardless of incarnation, Jesus, Buddha, Holy Spirit … whatever. You think he’s right there keeping an ever watchful eye on us, ready to stretch out a hand to us? What about Katrina? The Japanese Tsunami? The Holocaust? The massacre of the Native Americans? The hundreds of years of slavery for Black and other peoples? The current enslavement of women in so many parts of the world? What’s God’s position on this? Is he really more concerned whether or not a woman has an abortion than he is about the death of thousands and the enslavement of millions?

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I know the nature of faith is it defies logic and requires a leap. I thought I’d made the leap, but I think maybe I didn’t after all. I’m still standing at the chasm and every fiber of my intelligence assures me this leap will leave me shattered on the rocks below. I guess I’m not going to make it to wherever the faithful get to go when their miserable lives finally draw to a close.

I’ve had several close encounters with at least some shadow of the God or Gods who rule us. I know my life … my existence … has been twice returned to me. I’m not ungrateful, but I’m baffled. It appears I’m going to remain baffled. I’m not going to get the answers to my questions because no one has the answers. Frankly, if I think too long on this, it makes me crazy! I can’t believe and yet, I believe. Stuck forever on the cusp of questions without answers.

Or, as Tom Lehrer so eloquently said it, “Soon we’ll all be sliding down that razor blade of life …” Ouch.

11 thoughts on “Hey, God … How about a few answers?

  1. The older I get, the more I suspect we have been hoodwinked. All of the suffering, our 6 million, babies with no food, good people lost and suffering. God? I think not. Sorry.

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  2. I sort of tweeted/FB’d this post before really thinking about whether or not you’d want anyone to really read it, since God is one of those subjects that hits people hard. I’m sorry if it sends any crazies your way. No comment on the God thing, you know I’m a believer– patience, trust, and humility are built into that belief in way that doesn’t really ever separate enough to have a truly logical conversation. Plus, I have no answers.

    But, I thought this was beautiful… achingly honest, and simple in it’s capturing of timeless fears, hopes, and dreams.

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    • If I publish it, I stand ready to handle the fallout. It IS a hot-button — but the question is as old as time, the same one Job asked. Why do good people suffer while evil thrives? It’s the fundamental question of faith and I think no one can believe — or disbelieve — and not ask it. Or anyway, that’s how I think. I’m pretty sure most clerics would agree..

      Thank you for liking it!

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  3. Not to be flippant, I guess it is humans who are responsible for so many of the bad things in the world (natural disasters aside, and even some of those). I suppose this life is the chance to learn how we all might behave a little better towards each other. The realisation of how we might do this could be called the God within us. And there does seem to be real power in prayer, quite apart from any dogma. I read somewhere lately that they key is to be grateful, to thank, rather than to ask. Anyway, thanks for the thought-provoking piece, Marilyn.

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    • I can’t believe anything — nor can I believe nothing. If I am saved, why, when so many as good as I and probbly a lot better are not. Why did they die and I live? And why do so many really bad people thrive? It’s a question as old as time and unanswerable. There is no answer, logic, sense. Does anything we do make a difference? I don’t’ know. I have plenty of question, just no answers.

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  4. I bet there is a long line of questions. I can’t see where it starts. I’m currently just one in 7 billion & however many that have gone before me…

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  5. Pingback: What else could go wrong? | SERENDIPITY

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